Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Hunted By the Others by Jess Haines

Hunted By The Others
(H&W Investigations #1)
Jess Haines

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They are the Others — the vampires, mages, and werewolves once thought to exist only in our imaginations. Now they’re stepping out of the shadows, and nothing in our world will ever be the same again...


Shiarra Waynest’s detective work was dangerous enough when her client base was strictly mortal. But ailing finances have forced her to accept a lucrative case that could save her firm — if it doesn’t kill her first. Shiarra has signed on to work for a high-level mage to recover an ancient artifact owned by one of New York’s most powerful vampires.
As soon as Shiarra meets scary, mesmerizing vamp Alec Royce, she knows her assignment is even more complicated than she thought. With a clandestine anti-Other group trying to recruit her, and magi being eliminated, Shiarra needs back-up and enlists her ex-boyfriend–a werewolf whose non-furry form is disarmingly appealing–and a nerdy mage with surprising talents. But it may not be enough. In a city where the undead roam, magic rules, and even the Others aren’t always what they seem, Shiarra has just become the secret weapon in a battle between good and evil–whether she likes it or not…

Hunted By the Others is fun, fun, fun! With classic urban fantasy elements and a regular ole human heroine, this series is one to watch!

Shiarra (yes, that is her name. . .) is a private detective who owns her agency with her partner and best friend. A lack of cash flowing in forces Shiarra to take on a job working for The Circle, which is a local group of mages. In Haines' urban fantasy, there are no paranormals hiding, rather, they are out and about and everyone knows they exist. In addition to mages, this book has vampires and werewolves as well. Together these three group make up what is referred to as The Others, or anyone who is something other than human.

Shiarra is reluctant to get involved with the Others, since she is not too fond of them. She is terrified of vampires, The Circle is manipulative, and she just recently broke up with her boyfriend after he sprung on her that he was a werewolf. Of course, throughout the course of the book she must interact and even work with characters in each of these fantastical groups.

Haines writes each type of paranormal in a classic sense. Her vampires drink blood and are only awake at night. Her werewolves can turn only at a full moon and work together as tight-knit packs. Her arcane mages are smart, well-trained, and crafty. And Shiarra, the lowly human, is caught in the middle of them all not knowing what to do or who to trust.

In order to give her more of a chance against the Others, Shia comes to possess a magical weapons belt that is imbued with the spirit of a dead vampire hunter. The belt gives her some extra strength and some helpful combat moves. Yes, this is a little silly. The belt even talks to her inside her mind occasionally. I  would have preferred if the belt didn't talk to her. That was a little weird. Shia also makes friends with a helpful mage and enlists the aid of her werewolf ex in solving her magical problems. While Chaz, the werewolf ex, doesn't really have much of a personality to speak of, I really liked the mage, Arnold. He was dorky and sweet.

Shia also encounters handsome but devious vampire Royce. He was an interesting character and probably my favorite in the book. The reader is pulled back and forth during the story as to whether or not to trust him. Haines leaves us wondering what will happen next between the two at the end of the book and going into book two I must say I'm curious where their 'relationship' will go.

One area of the world building that I felt a bit confused about was all the talk of contracts. In this world, humans and Others must sign a contract together if they want any sort of relationship with each other. The problem is that these contracts give the Other all the power and basically say that if something happens to the human, like for example the vampire drinks them to death, the Other cannot be in trouble with the law. I felt that these contracts were perplexing. . .if you want to date a werewolf you have to sign a contract binding you to them before you can legally sleep together? Weird.

Overall, I really enjoyed Hunted By the Others, even though it suffered from first book syndrome at times. This is a really fun UF that is neither light and airy nor dark and gritty - it sits somewhere in between. I will definitely read book two.



  1. I love this series, I've read all the books and the fourth was also really great! I hope your feelings will even improves with the second one. Great review!

  2. Lovely review, and I have to say, this series gets better and better with each book. The third book was absolutely amazing and i can't wait to read the forth ;)


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